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January 2022

Use of speech-modulated noise adds strong ''bottom-up'' cues for phonemic restoration

Author(s): Warren, R. M., Brown, C. A.

Journal/Book: Percept Psychophys. 1996; 58: 1710 Fortview Rd, Austin, TX 78704. Psychonomic Soc Inc. 342-350.

Abstract: When deleted segments of speech are replaced by extraneous sounds rather than silence, the missing speech fragments may be perceptually restored and intelligibility improved. This phonemic restoration (PhR) effect has been used to measure various aspects of speech processing, with deleted portions of speech typically being replaced by stochastic noise. However, several recent studies of PhR have used speech-modulated noise, which may provide amplitude-envelope cues concerning the replaced speech. The present study compared the effects upon intelligibility of replacing regularly spaced portions of speech with stochastic (white) noise versus speech-modulated noise. In Experiment 1, filling periodic gaps in sentences with noise modulated by the amplitude envelope of the deleted speech fragments produced twice the intelligibility increase obtained with interpolated stochastic noise. Moreover, when lists of isolated monosyllables were interrupted in Experiment 2, interpolation of speech-modulated noise increased intelligibility whereas stochastic noise reduced intelligibility. The augmentation of PhR produced by modulated noise appeared without practice, suggesting that speech processing normally involves not only a narrowband analysis of spectral information but also a wideband integration of amplitude levels across critical bands. This is of considerable theoretical interest, but it also suggests that since PhRs produced by speech-modulated noise utilize potent; bottom-up cues provided by the noise, they differ from the PhRs produced by extraneous sounds, such as coughs and stochastic noise.

Note: Article JA Bashford, Univ Wisconsin, Dept Psychol, Milwaukee, WI 53201 USA


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